Grow Cook Nourish, by Darina Allen (Kyle)
The title alone is a significant new food koan, a life-long food philosophy summed up in just three words. Everyone debates just which of Mrs Allen’s books is the most essential – The Ballymaloe School Cookbook?, Forgotten Skills of Cooking? – but for us this is the one. Read our review...
Greta’s Herbs, by Greta McCarthy O’Brien (Greta’s Herbs)
With the vivid sub-title of Growing Wild in the West Of Ireland, Greta’s book looks modest, but once you open the pages you are assailed by a wealth – a lifetime’s worth – of knowledge. Greta grows her herbs on the Dingle Peninsula, and describes herself as a wild gardener, someone “not averse to a bit of chaos.” The text and photographs marry beautifully to evoke the wild west, and this is a precious, very personal book: make sure to have it when spring rolls around and the season is upon us.
Cut Flower Farm, by Erin Benzakein (Chronicle)
Ms Benzakein’s book has been an Instagram phenomenon – 8 reprints and counting – and whilst a book on flower gardening might seem out of place amongst serious cookery titles, it does feature small sections on vegetables and squashes. But what is paramount here is the aesthetic: yes, you need beautiful food on the table, but you also need beautiful flowers. Inspiring.